Military Families Can Get Into These 10 Live Theatre Productions for Free or Reduced Prices

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Experience the magic of live theatre with your family this year at a Blue Star Theatre. We have you covered from coast to coast! Here are but a few of the many family-friendly productions that will be hitting the stage in the coming months. (Keep in mind that all Blue Star Theatres offer discounts to military families but ticket prices and availability vary. Check out each theatre’s website for special pricing or call the box office.) With this many wonderful plays for young audiences on the schedule, we know you will find something to fit your family’s taste. Later, be sure to share your photos and stories with Blue Star Families by using #BlueStarTheatres!

Highlighted below are theatres in Arizona, California, Louisiana, Minnesota, and Pennsylvania. Visit the Blue Star Theatre interactive map to find a theatre in your community. There are over 150 participating theatres in our network so we hope you will find a place to create new memories with your family this year.

Childsplay Theatre

Childsplay Theatre located in Tempe, Arizona is dedicated to producing plays for young people that will open their eyes to the magic of theatre. Their mission is to “instill in young people an enduring awe, love, and respect for the medium.

1. The Girl Who Swallowed a Cactus

The Girl Who Swallowed A Cactus is about the adventures that can result from boredom in the summertime. The show, written by Eric Coble, runs on weekends from October 27 – November 18, 2018. When school is out, there’s nothing to do and the desert sun beats down hot, Sheila and her friends find them\selves in search of something – anything – interesting to explore. So when a walking, talking, and surprisingly well-dressed coyote shows up, the kids find themselves on the adventure of a lifetime! Filled with magical realism and surprises at every turn, this funny story of friendship and imagination will bring the desert landscape to life.

2. In This Corner… Cassius Clay

Follow this with In This Corner…Cassius Clay which runs on weekends from January 27 – March 3, 2019. Written by Idris Goodwin, “In This Corner” illustrates the life of a young Muhammad Ali and his journey to becoming a legend. At the sound of the bell, young Cassius Clay takes his first step into the ring and starts becoming the man the world would come to know as Muhammad Ali. Before he became one of the world’s greatest boxers and civil rights advocates, he was a 12-year-old boy navigating friendship, family and learning to fight for himself and his community in the segregated South of the 1950’s. Step into the ring with Cassius (and his world-famous rhymes and sense of humor) and learn about his journey to become an American hero.

3. The Very Hungry Caterpillar Show

Finally, you and the whole family can go see a production of The Very Hungry Caterpillar Show. Written by Jonathan Rockefeller, and based on Eric Carle’s books, the show runs on weekends from March 17 – April 21, 2019. Watch as Eric Carle’s iconic stories and illustrations come to life on stage! From A Very Hungry Caterpillar who undergoes a magical transformation to The Very Lonely Firefly who learns to shine his light by finding friends, you won’t want to miss this fantastical puppet experience.

South Coast Repertory

If you live near Orange County, California, treat your family to a show at South Coast Repertory. With their “Theatre for Young Audiences” program, South Coast Repertory is dedicated to bringing a variety of shows suitable for children of all ages.

4. Nate the Great

This fall, Theatre for Young Audiences is putting on a production of  Nate the Great, which runs from November 2 – 18, 2018. Based on the book by Marjorie Sharmat, this show’s fun-filled adventures are guaranteed to be a thrill for the whole family. Nate the Great, the world’s greatest kid detective, loves solving mysteries—almost as much as eating pancakes. When Annie’s special painting of her dog, Fang, goes missing, Nate’s on a new case! Did Fang bury it? Is Rosamond, who prefers cats over dogs, up to foul play? Come along as Nate searches for clues and gathers the facts in this clever musical that teaches us to see the world in new ways.

5. The Velveteen Rabit

Next summer, you can then go see a production of a classic: The Velveteen Rabbit which runs from May 24 – June 9, 2019. Based on the book by Margery Williams, and adapted for the stage by Janet Allard, for nearly a century, this beloved classic has captivated and charmed children and adults, alike. Lonely and forgotten, a stuffed rabbit longs to be real. When another toy is lost, he quickly becomes a little boy’s new favorite. As the rabbit’s dapper appearance gets worn and shabby from play, a wonderful change begins to happen. A moving story about the power of love—and a little bit of magic.

Le Petit Theatre

6. A Christmas Carol

Le Petit Theatre, located in New Orleans, Louisiana, has a holiday production of A Christmas Carol this coming December. The first-annual production of Charles Dickens’ heartwarming Victorian classic, A Christmas Carol, features 20 young artists from our newly-launched Young Conservatory Program. Miserly and menacing moneylender Ebenezer Scrooge learns lessons in love, generosity, and redemption when he is visited by a host of spirits on the eve of Christmas Eve. Filled with magic, ghosts, and holiday cheer. Le Petit has a long tradition of having young people perform on its stages and we are proud that the launch of our Young Conservatory in the fall will culminate in a youth company of performers who will take the stage in A Christmas Carol. Directed by Maxwell Williams, the show runs from December 7 – 23, 2018.

Stage Theatre Company

If you and your family are located near Hopkins, Minnesota, make a pit stop at Stage Theatre Company! Featuring children’s productions all year round, Stages is dedicated to putting on productions the whole family can enjoy.

7. Three Snow Bears

Starting in January they are putting on a production of Three Snow Bears. Based on the book by Jan Brett, “Three Snow Bears” is a delightful take on a classic children’s story. “She came to the biggest igloo she’d ever seen. ‘Who lives here?’ she wondered, and she went inside.” Ride along with us this winter through the magnificent Arctic landscape of award-winning author Jan Brett’s delightful twist on the Goldilocks tale. A search for her missing sled dogs leads Aloo-ki to an igloo she can’t resist exploring…. Yet, while she is making herself at home, the Three Snow Bears are out walking, waiting for their breakfast to cool off…An endearing snow bear family and a curious Inuit girl meet center stage in our world premiere musical adaptation of the picture book by the best-selling author/illustrator of The Mitten and Hedgie’s Surprise. The show runs from January 18 – February 18, 2019.

8. Roald Dahl’s Willy Wonka

In June of 2019, you can take the whole family to everybody’s favorite chocolate factory with Stage Theatre Company’s production of Roald Dahl’s Willy Wonka. The scrumdidilyumptious adventures of Charlie Bucket touring the enigmatic Willy Wonka’s mysterious chocolate factory enlivens our stage this summer. This enchanting adaptation, featuring memorable songs from the 1971 film, will be a delicious experience for everyone to savor! Running from June 28, August 4, 2019.

Bloomsburg Theatre Ensemble

In Pennsylvania, Bloomsburg Theatre Ensemble is presenting two shows for young people this season.

9. Wizard of Oz

The first is a production of the classic, Wizard of Oz. A performance that will delight all ages, this show is running from November 23 – December 29, 2018. Click your heels together three times and join us for a whimsical journey as we bring this beloved musical to our stage! When a tornado rips through Kansas, Dorothy and her dog, Toto, are whisked away to the magical land of Oz. With help from a Scarecrow, a Tin Man, and a Cowardly Lion, they dodge witches and talking apple trees in search of the powerful Wizard. Whether you’re new to the yellow brick road or a long-time traveler, join in the fun that will leave you saying “There’s no place like BTE, There’s no place like BTE.”

10. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time

Next up is The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time. Fifteen-year-old Christopher is on a mission. After the untimely death of his neighbor’s dog, the brilliant and unique boy is compelled to investigate the crime. Experience the world through Christopher’s eyes as he embarks on an extraordinary journey where he challenges assumed truths and discovers life-changing secrets.  We are thrilled to bring you this smash-hit play fresh from highly acclaimed runs on Broadway and London’s West End! This performance is suitable for ages 12+ and runs from March 28 – April 14, 2019.

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Joanna Guldin